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Test Software to Analyze Video Files

Posted on 2014-02-15
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Last Modified: 2014-03-03
Being a big movie buff, I convert many of my Blu-ray titles to H.264, 1920x1080 mp4  format with DVDFab 9 software. The last few movies I've converted, however, appear "jerky" when playing them back on my 80 inch HDTV and I'm trying to understand why.

It's not the case that they have all been jerky because they haven't. Only recently. I understand I can contact DVDFab tech support, but I'd like to go a bit deeper first.

I also realize the first question one would ask is "what's changed?" That answer is complex, opening the door to many possibilities i.e. new Synology DS1513+ with new hard drives, DVDFab updates, etc.

If possible, I'd like to start with the file being created - the mp4, and analyze it's characteristics rather than watch it on the screen. That approach is time consuming and subjective, at best.

Often, I may not actually watch the mp4 for days or even weeks before I discover there's a problem.

Is anyone aware of such software? That way I could compare the file characteristics of movies I created previously to the more recent ones.
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Question by:SpaceCoastLife
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Expert Comment

by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 39861340
Depends on the detail you want to go into and TBH how much you understand about encoding.

Suggest you start with mediainfo - either as a standalone download or as part of the K-Lite codec package.

Bear in mind that .mp4 is a container and the contents can vary considerably affecting the resources needed for playback.
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Author Comment

by:SpaceCoastLife
ID: 39861591
Well, I understand very little about encoding. I'm looking at mediainfo now but must admit most of it I don't understand. Tell me this, if you're able: given the fact the resolution is 1080p, what parameter should I be looking for that could cause finite jerking during playback on a HDTV?
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 39861684
possibly the simplest approach would be to compare a jerky file with one that plays fine and the results of the mediainfo details.  I'm assuming you haven't knowingly changed any settings, just allowed normal updating and a new NAS (are you streaming form that or playing from a PC?).

Does this look like a buffering problem to you?  (Plays normally, stalls, normal again,etc.)
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Author Comment

by:SpaceCoastLife
ID: 39861726
Streaming from my NAS and no, it doesn't look like buffering. Thing is, I'm comparing 6 files. Some created a year ago, some yesterday. The older ones play fine, the recent ones - jerky, but the following parameters in mediainfo are almost identical for all of them.

Format: MPEG-4
Codec: AVC
Bit Rate: 7459 kbps
W/H/Aspect Ratio/Frame Rate: 1920x1080 (16:9) @23.967 fps
Format Profile: AVC(Main @L4.0)
Format Settings: CABAC/1 Ref Frames
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Expert Comment

by:Merete
ID: 39862299
I use a codec analyser called gspot very simple to use and easy to see if there is a difference, drop an older video on it will analyse it instantly using your snipping tool in windows 7 save a regeon screenshot and then drop a nwer video on hold the gspot on one side and the snapshot of the older to the other side and compare
http://www.videohelp.com/tools/GSpot
Personal experience update your video drivers should solve it.
And only from your manufacturer.
 Synology DS1513+ is just a storage right what is actually streaming?
Have you ever heard of XBMC? very good for mp4
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XBMC
http://xbmc.org/
Rasberry pi?  hook it up to your NAS
http://mymediaexperience.com/raspberry-pi-xbmc-with-raspbmc/
Raspberry Pi Media Centre and Streamer, wireless, XBMC network player
http://qavo.com.au/raspberry-pi-media-centre-and-streamer-wireless-xbmc-network-player/?gclid=CJGO5e-E0LwCFSrpwgoduFoA1A
Kit for rasberry pi
http://au.element14.com/jsp/search/productdetail.jsp?sku=2310263&CMP=KNC-GOO-COM-RPI&mckv=siHfMLB1l|pcrid|27348180168
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Author Comment

by:SpaceCoastLife
ID: 39864410
I think I've about analyzed the files enough to be pretty sure their not the source of the problem so I'm now focusing on the NAS itself. One of the things I'm suspicious of, but have no technical reason to be is my RAID configuration. In my previous setup before these problems started to occur I had 2 drives in a NAS configured RAID 0. Now I have 5 drives configured the same way. So, said another way, that's 1 movie file divided across 5 drives.

Synology provides the app on the NAS that streams the video outbound. I'm wondering if the issue is throughput. One would think Synology would have thoroughly tested that, but who knows.

Any thoughts?
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Accepted Solution

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Merete earned 500 total points
ID: 39887994
Sorry for late responses but all I can think of
 this profile seems at odds with 23.967 frames fps.
W/H/Aspect Ratio/Frame Rate: 1920x1080 (16:9) @23.967 fps maybe should be at least 25 fps?
1920x1080 is a DVD size  and in mpeg4 format could be dropping frames.
Are you using ntsc or pal?
The Audio codec used is that AC3?
The Bluray DVD that is being converted is that PAL DVD AC-3 audio file and converting it with the frame-rate change option  in DVDFab 9  to a new NTSC DVD AC-3 audio file?
Something in this area I'd look into.
What is the video and audio format on the DVD
I feel this whole process would be a lot easier if you could export the movie as an mpeg-2.
But what may differ is today's technology verses 5 years ago.
Hope these guides help you
DVD Fab 9 conversion settings
The resolution of the video, the video and audio codecs, the container format used, and even more esoteric things like frame rate can affect whether your video will work on your device of choice.
Guide to Blu Ray
Motion Design Standards supported frame-rates.
http://design.uh.edu/dossett/pdf/motionlab/Standards.pdf
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Author Closing Comment

by:SpaceCoastLife
ID: 39900502
Sorry it took me so long to respond. Thanks for the info.
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Expert Comment

by:Merete
ID: 39902024
Thanks glad to help
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